So today I skipped school to go with some my brother and some friends to an Orphanage here in Xi'an. We spent the morning playing with the children and helping in anyway we could. There are about 20 or so kids that are with this particular home and about 7 workers (that were there when we were). It was a difficult situation to step into to say the least. But it was also very encouraging to see that these children were taken care of very well. All the children in this home have deformities and/or handicaps. When I asked how the children come to the home the lady who was accompanying us told us that all these children had been abandoned by their parents due to their handicap/deformity. Some though had been abandoned because their family could not afford the medical costs that their child needed. The children's deformities ranged from having cleft pallets to issues with their hands or feet. I was so amazed to see the childcare workers there taking care of these kids in such a self-sacrificing way, and the lady with us even told us that the women working there are incredibly devoted to these kids. All of them working there carry a very deep love and are motivated by something greater then them. Another facet of this home is that they work with getting families setup to adopt the kids. Currently they have had over 200 of these kids adopted through them. We got to hold them, play with them and help feed them and I hope to get to go back in the future. I will say this also, it is a very special thing to be able to pick up a child and not only tell them, but show them that they are valuable and that they are loved. I'm going to be putting something together to help this home out in the next couple of weeks, so make sure to drop in if your interested in this issue.
matt, heather, sydney and little aubrey